Widow of man shot by Mesa police seeks help from hacker group 'A - Tucson News Now

Widow of man shot by Mesa police seeks help from hacker group 'Anonymous'

Police said Daniel Shaver was not fully complying with officers' commands. (Source: KPHO/KTVK) Police said Daniel Shaver was not fully complying with officers' commands. (Source: KPHO/KTVK)
MESA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

The widow of a man shot and killed by Mesa police says she turned to the hacker group "Anonymous" for help after the department repeatedly denied her requests for information on the case.

Anonymous responded this week by posting a video threatening to reveal the department’s “many abuses” if it did not identify, fire, and charge the officers involved in two deadly shootings since January.

“When we're the ones trying to move forward and grieve and heal, we can't have that until we have answers,” said Laney Sweet, the widow of Daniel Shaver.

Shaver was fatally shot Jan. 18 at a hotel after police say he refused to comply with orders and repeatedly reached toward his lower back. Officers were responding to a call of an armed man pointing a rifle out a window. After the shooting, they learned Shaver was not armed. Police found two pellet rifles in the hotel room, which officers determined were part of Shaver’s job in pest control.

Sweet said she has submitted at least 14 public records requests to Mesa Police seeking to learn more about the circumstances of her husband’s shooting. All the requests have been ignored, she said, and the department has offered no timeline for when more information may be available.

“Anonymous, they're known for being able to tap into things that aren't released and we were just hoping that maybe they could help us in some way,” she said. “If Anonymous is able to bring any of it to light, it's better than nothing.”

Sweet, who recently filed a $35 million notice of claim in preparation for a lawsuit, said she particularly wants access to body camera footage of the shooting.

[READ MORE: Wife of man shot, killed by police at Mesa hotel files $35M notice of claim]

“If they would just call us and release the information that we've been asking for ever since we found out that my husband was killed, then we wouldn't take other means.”

The mother of Kayden Clarke, a transgender man whose legal name is Danielle Jacobs, said she too has not been given any information since Clarke was fatally shot by officers Feb. 4.

“This is how slowly it moves, unfortunately. We want an investigation to be thorough. We want it to be correct and accurate,” said Mesa Det. Esteban Flores.

The officer-involved shooting investigations will be reviewed by the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office. The county attorney has asked Mesa Police not to release any information before the investigations are complete, Flores said.

Flores said the department is aware of the video posted by Anonymous and investigated it earlier this week. While the video promises action, he said, the department does not feel it rises to a criminal threat. The video has been removed by YouTube.

Meantime, a dozen activists aligned with Anonymous and the Occupy movement protested the Mesa Police Department Friday at Pioneer Park. Many of the demonstrators wore masks or bandanas over their faces, and declined requests to be interviewed.

Copyright 2016 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


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